Harris v. Sowers et al
OPINION AND ORDER denying 45 Motion to Compel. Signed by Magistrate Judge Elizabeth Preston Deavers on November 28, 2017. (jlk)(This document has been sent by regular mail to the party(ies) listed in the NEF that did not receive electronic notification.)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF OHIO
Civil Action 2:16-cv-888
Judge James L. Graham
Magistrate Judge Elizabeth P. Deavers
AARON SOWERS, et al.,
OPINION AND ORDER
Plaintiff, Lionel Harris, an Ohio inmate who is proceeding without the assistance of
counsel, brings this civil rights action under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 against Defendants, employees of
Madison Correctional Institution. This matter is before the Court for consideration of Plaintiff’s
Motion to Compel (ECF No. 45) and Defendants’ Response (ECF No. 47). No reply has been
Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 37 permits a party to file a motion for an order
compelling discovery if another party fails to respond to discovery requests, provided that the
motion to compel includes a certification that the movant has, in good faith, conferred or
attempted to confer with the party failing to respond to the requests. Fed. R. Civ. P. 37(a)(1).
The Court is satisfied that this prerequisite to filing a discovery motion has been satisfied. (ECF
No. 45 at PAGEID # 439.)
Determining the scope of discovery is within the Court’s discretion. Bush v. Dictaphone
Corp., 161 F.3d 363, 367 (6th Cir. 1998). “[T]he proponent of a motion to compel discovery
bears the initial burden of proving that the information sought is relevant.” Guinn v. Mount
Carmel Health Sys., No. 2:09-cv-226, 2010 WL 2927254, at *5 (S.D. Ohio July 23, 2010)
(quoting Clumm v. Manes, No. 2:08–cv–567 (S.D. Ohio May 27, 2010)).
Plaintiff challenges the sufficiency of Defendants’ responses to several of his written
discovery requests, namely Document Request Nos. 5, 6, 7, and 10. (ECF No. 45.) Plaintiff,
however, has failed to attach the discovery requests and Defendants’ responses. While Plaintiff
and Defendants have generally described the nature of these requests and responses, the Court,
based on the present record, is unable to evaluate the propriety of specific document requests or
the sufficiency of Defendants’ responses. Accordingly, Plaintiff’s Motion to Compel is not well
taken. See Clifford v. Church Mut. Ins. Co., No. 2:13–cv–853, 2014 WL 5383929, at *7 (S.D.
Ohio Oct. 21, 2014) (denying motion to compel where, inter alia, the moving parties failed,
among other things, to attach allegedly deficient discovery responses and stating that “plaintiffs
apparently expect this Court to accept as true their assertion that defendant’s response to the
disputed discovery requests was inadequate and/or to otherwise sift through the parties’
correspondence to [determine the sufficiency of the discovery responses]”); see also Parks, LLC
v. Tyson Foods, Inc., No. 5:15–cv–00946, 2015 WL 5042918, at *7 (E.D. Pa. Aug. 26, 2015)
(“To enable the Court to assess that motion [to compel], the party must inform the Court of the
result of this [discovery] process: the Court must know which request is at issue, how the
response to that request is allegedly deficient, and why the producing party’s response runs afoul
of the discovery rules.”).
In sum, Plaintiff’s Motion to Compel (ECF No. 45) is DENIED WITHOUT
IT IS SO ORDERED.
Date: November 28, 2017
/s/ Elizabeth A. Preston Deavers
ELIZABETH A. PRESTON DEAVERS
UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
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